It is always exciting to get back on to the trails at the start of each season and see how our trail work looks after the winter. These early surveys help with planning for the season as we can prioritise damaged areas and also review the techniques that were used and see what has worked best.
Although the winter has had some impact on the network as it always does, the first trails and old worksites that we visited are looking quite good. There is still plenty of maintenance work for us to do however and we look forward to the arrival of our first volunteers and getting started on the practical tasks in about two weeks time.
Steps on the west of Valahnúkur, where maintenance work was focused last season.
One of the viewpoint benches added last summer.
Timber ‘ladder’ steps added on an area of slippery bedrock last summer (just waiting for additional landscaping at the edges).
We made an early start to the season this week with our first trip to Thórsmörk.
As well as delivering equipment ahead of the volunteer teams, it was a valuable opportunity to take a look at conditions on the trails and in the forest as the snow clears, and to make some final decisions about our work priorities for the season.
It was very nice to back at our volunteer camp at Langidalur (it felt like returning home), and exciting to begin preparations for another Trailteam summer. Our first international volunteers will be with us in less than 6 weeks time and we are looking forward to getting back on work on the trails.
Pictures taken at Langidalur volunteer camp on April 11th.
After weeks of applications and interviews, our summer teams are now finally (just about) ready.
Once again, this year we received a lot of interest in the placements with many strong applicants and there were some difficult decisions when making the selection. A couple of new teams were added to the programme so that we could include as many as possible.
Our 2022 teams are made up of participants from 18 countries and include first-time volunteers, returners and others with placements that were deferred due to travel disruption last summer. We are delighted that several of our most experienced volunteers will be returning as team leaders this summer and we very much look forward to working with them again.
We plan to return to Thórsmörk for preparations and trail survey tasks in April (when conditions allow) and our first volunteers will begin the practical work in May.
The teams are now almost ready and we will soon be heading back to Thórsmörk for another summer of Trailteam adventures. This season we plan to host approximately 40 international volunteers in our 3 and 6-week teams and our volunteer camps will open for the first arrivals in May.
Gathering the teams is the highlight of our winter work and it has been very exciting to meet many new volunteers as well as catch up with old friends who are planning to join us again. As always, we have put together an ambitious summer programme and we are very much looking forward to returning for our tenth season in Thórsmörk and Goðaland.
Despite some ongoing uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we remain cautiously optimistic that our plans will go ahead and that we will be able to return to the trails in May.
We are now coming to the end of our search for volunteers for 2022. Applications will close at the end of Monday, January 31st so if you are thinking about joining us, please do get in touch.
Preparations for our return to Thórsmörk are going very well and we are delighted by the response to our call for volunteers. The applications are open until the end of the month so if you would like to join us in Thórsmörk this summer, please do get in touch.
No previous experience of trail construction work is necessary as practical training will be provided. We are looking for participants who have some experience of camping and hill walking, enjoy wilderness landscapes and are ready for a challenge. Iceland’s notoriously changeable weather means that our teams have to be well prepared with warm clothing, good waterproofs and sturdy tents. Due to the strenuous nature of our work, participants must be physically fit and as many of our work sites are in remote locations, we do a lot of hiking to get to them! Our team is chosen from applicants and there is no participation fee.
We have created this site to bring you news about our volunteer projects in Thórsmörk and Goðaland. As well as an outline of our summer programme, the site includes information for volunteers taking part and details about how to get involved. The Thórsmörk trail maintenance programme is coordinated by Iceland’s Forest Service (Skógræktin).
Our 2022 placements have now been allocated. Applications are open between December 15th and January 31st.